I Got an Aura Reading and It Seriously Changed My Life

"Mystic Michaela" claims to provide "spiritual life guidance" through her psychic and aura reading abilities.

aura reading portrait
Photo: Norma Zuniga/Getty Images

I've had psychic readings before, but an aura reading? Never. I once took a quiz that told me my aura was green, which was a major buzzkill, considering green is my second least favorite color — but I didn't give it much thought after that disappointing result.

That is, until a reality TV–loving friend of mine mentioned aura reader Michaela Firester or "Mystic Michaela," whom she heard about on Kaitlyn Bristowe's (of Bachelor/Bachelorette fame) podcast, Off The Vine. Firester gained fame in 2017 after she reportedly reached out to Real Housewives of Orange County via Facebook to schedule a reading which ended with Firester predicting the birth of the reality star's daughter and twin boys.

I was immediately intrigued: If there's anything that sells me, it's a prediction. I wondered what Firester could see if she read my aura. Will I get that book deal? Will I finally get that mansion with a pool and outdoor firepit? Will spiders stop eating my beloved plant, Yukiko?

What Is an Aura?

The word aura stems from both the Greek and Latin aura, which is defined as "breath, cool breeze, air in motion," and "breeze, wind, the upper air," respectively. The term has been used in the spiritual sense across many cultures. The history of photograph aura readings goes back to the mid-1800s when Austrian chemist Karl Ludwig Freiherr von Reichenbach started taking photos of objects in total darkness in an attempt to capture the invisible energy that surrounded them — aka their aura.

Like enneagrams or astrology, auras can supposedly help you understand yourself and the people around you a little better. And no, an aura is not just gas or a hallucination. An aura is a colored energy field that surrounds a person and can encompass a few shades, notes Firester. Auras can shift if you're not feeling well or going through a difficult situation, she explains. In those cases, auras can become dull.

What Is an Aura Reading, Then?

Reading auras are a way of "sorting through our programming and trauma to get to the actual authenticity we were born with," says Firester. One important thing that makes her reading unique, though, is that she calls herself both a psychic and aura reader. Used in tandem, her abilities can supposedly give you a larger, more detailed picture of what's going on in your life, compared to just an aura reading alone.

Through her aura readings, Firester says she can provide "spiritual life guidance" and help clients make conscious changes to their energy so "your path can align to you." In other words, she lets you know what facets of your behavior are holding you back so you can make the changes and hopefully achieve the goals and self-growth you're pursuing. If you're feeling confused or unhappy about work, love, or family life, for example, Firester can take a look at your aura to see why and how you can fix that.

Sounds too good not to at least try it, right? If Firester can give me guidance as well as predictions, I thought, she might offer some clarity to help me make some serious breakthroughs.

My Aura Reading Experience

I had to find out for myself if Firester was the real deal. I set up a phone appointment since we don't live in the same state, but Firester assured me that this wouldn't affect her ability to read me. She can see auras in photos, she says, so all she required were a few pics of myself and anyone I want to know about.

The most important picture is a selfie taken right before the reading, Firester told me. When it came time for my reading, I sent her a photo of myself trying on lipstick, a picture of myself and a family member, a photo with friends, and a mirror selfie taken a few minutes before the reading.

Here are just a few things I learned during my aura reading:

Your aura can reveal your deepest issues.

"Your purple is bright, signifying creativity and intuition among other things, but you wear an inauthentic red," Firester told me during my reading. "It's a tool to help you be tougher and show other people you don't care what they think. You have blue in your aura as well. You're an empath, but you tuck it away. In that last picture, your blue was just hanging out all over the place," she said.

I giggled as I thought of the blue part of my aura just oozing out all over the place. But what about that "inauthentic" red? "That fake red you wear is from the survival instincts you've created from the way you were raised," Firester continued. She asked for a photo of my parents because, as she put it, "how they raised you still very much affects you today."

Gulp. I stopped giggling. My father has bipolar disorder which he has left untreated — a situation that was incredibly hard for me to handle as a child. And my mother was…difficult, to say the least. But I hardly expected Firester to pick up on my dysfunctional childhood based on a picture of me trying on lipstick at Nordstrom.

"Growing up, you didn't want to show any weakness to your mom," said Firester. "You hid your blue to protect yourself. You associate being vulnerable with being a victim," she explained.

Over the past year, I had been consumed by the books and talks of Brené Brown — the famed vulnerability researcher, NYT bestselling author, and Oprah fave — and using what I learned to work on becoming more open and letting down my walls. The way Firester worded her insight went to the very heart of the matter; why I had the walls up in the first place. Lightbulb!

I had many tarot readings before, but none of them had gone this deep or linked my past to my current life in such a clear, linear way. Previously when I asked psychics for advice, I got the general "you're fine, that's just life" sort of advice. But Firester went deeper into the childhood issues that were motivating my self-work.

Auras can show the dynamic between two people.

First, some context: After dealing with a series of hurtful comments and false information a family member had fed me, I knew I could no longer trust her and ended our relationship. Nonetheless, I struggled to understand why she behaved as she did. Without telling her anything about what happened, Firester took one look at her picture and immediately knew.

"She feels like she's allowed to say whatever she thinks — hurtful things — without any filters," said Firester. "She's just like, 'whatever, that's what friends do,'" she added.

"Yes!" I shouted. Firester had this person's number for sure. It was like she had gone deep diving into my family member's brain and read her mind.

What Firester went on to explain was that this person resents me for living on my own terms. Her comments were eerily accurate. I had been replaying the events between me and this person over and over again wondering if there was something I could have said or done differently, but hearing Firester's take on it left me feeling at ease, knowing there wasn't much I could have done.

Auras can show life lessons.

"There's a man from your past that's showing up," Firester started again. I had a feeling I knew who it was, so I dug up a photo from Facebook and texted it to her.

"He's also needy and sensitive but hates himself for it. The minute he felt himself needing you, he disappeared," said Firester. "The thing is, you've been tucking your vulnerability away for so long, and he reflected how you treated yourself. The Universe stuck a mirror in your face so you could see yourself and learn the lessons," she continued.

At this point, my mind was exploding. I have always hated feeling sensitive, weak, needy, or soft. When I made a mistake or didn't live up to my own standards, I'd beat myself up and raise my walls even higher. This guy wasn't much different. When he was younger, he hid behind a wall of drugs and alcohol and had been in and out of jail to mask the pain of his broken home.

Hearing all of this from Firester helped me see that dating him allowed me to see my own shortcomings and break down my own barriers. And more importantly, it helped me see the things I needed to change in my own life.

And yes, I learned a bit about my future.

Firester also told me I'd be moving, that I'd write a book, I would never go back to a nine-to-five job, that someone significant with the letter "J" and a red aura would enter my life, and if someone pressured me to do something work-wise I didn't want to do, I didn't have to.

Interestingly enough, the latter already came to fruition as someone pressured me to work on a project that I simply had no interest in. As I pondered over the request, Firester's words rang in my ears, and I passed. In the past, I might have had anxiety over this, but now I felt like my passing on it is going to open the door for better-suited work.

If you're interested in the practice of aura readings or want to know how to do it, Firester says that while she was born with her abilities, she also teaches people how to read auras. "Even if you don't see colors, you can learn to feel their vibes," she explains.

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